“We knew Trump was the ‘classic sleazeball’, now there’s proof he’s also a patronising twerp,” says Kate Halfpenny.
Another Donald Trump foreign visit and another awkward handshake – however it was Donald Trump’s exchange with French First Lady Brigitte Macron which has got the world talking.
In a video on the French presidential Facebook account, Mr Trump and Ms Macron extend their hands to one another, fumbling to make contact, before they embrace for a traditional kiss on each cheek…..then they then ungracefully hold hands, for what seemed to be an inordinately long time.
He repeated the observation to the French president before turning back to the French first lady, and remarking: “Beautiful.”
Watch CNN’s report of the greeting
Ms Macron was her husband’s former high school teacher and their relationship has drawn international attention because of their age difference – Ms Macron is 64, while her husband is 39.
Does age really matter in good relationship?
The comments have been denounced in some circles as sexist, noting that the Macrons’ age difference is similar to that of Donald and Melania Trump.
Trump hints at change of heart on Paris Accord
More substantively, Mr Trump appeared to be holding the door open to a reversal of his decision to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accord, but did not say what he would need in return to persuade him to do so.
Mr Trump, who has made few friends in Europe with his rejection of the 2015 Paris agreement and his “America First” trade stance, met Mr Macron in Paris on Thursday as both leaders sought common ground to reset an awkward relationship.
“Something could happen with respect to the Paris accords, let’s see what happens,” Mr Trump told a news conference. “If it happens, that will be wonderful, and if it doesn’t, that’ll be OK too.”
Mr Trump has said the Paris accord is soft on leading polluters like China and India, putting US industry at risk.
“There is no sudden and unexpected change today, otherwise we would have announced it, but there is the shared intention to continue discussing these issues,” the French president added.
Mr Trump and Mr Macron’s relationship got off to a bumpy start, but both have an incentive to improve relations – Mr Macron hopes to elevate France’s role in global affairs, and Mr Trump, seemingly isolated among world leaders, needs a friend overseas.
“My handshake with him, it’s not innocent,” Mr Macron said some days later. “It’s not the alpha and the omega of politics, but a moment of truth.”
A day after that, Mr Macron performed a body swerve away from Mr Trump as he approached a group of leaders, and instead picked out German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Mr Trump’s handshakes have become closely observed moments in his diplomatic interactions. When Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited the White House early this year, their handshake lasted for an uncomfortable 20 seconds, with Mr Abe appearing to try and break off several times.
And during his March meeting with Ms Merkel, Mr Trump appeared to refuse to shake her hand despite the pleas of media onlookers.
Source: The New Daily 14/07/2017